Vegan Glory Bowl

Originally from the Whitewater Cooks and named after the “Glory Bowl” run at Whitewater Ski Resort in Nelson, B.C., this already famous vegan dish is not only easy, it’s downright delicious too.

You’re a true beef-loving Albertan at heart eh?  “But I’m not vegan” you say. Vegan schmegan! This healthy meal can be thrown together in 20 minutes (as long as it takes the rice to cook) and is so yummy, even our beef-loving taste-testers said “holy crap this is good!” Don’t be fooled, and don’t let people tell you tofu is gross, weird, or yucky; they’re wrong. The vegan tofu found at Hearts Choices is tasty; light and fluffy, and full of flavour. Vegans and meat-lovers alike enjoy the non-GMO foods found at Hearts Choices, and heck, Nan and Chris are just so darn nice.

The Glory Bowl dressing is pre-made with care and sold for those who are short on time, and they do a bang up job. Or you can pick up the individual ingredients to whip it up yourself.

The dressing itself is made from just six ingredients and combined in a food processor. Extra virgin olive oil, apple cider vinegar, tahini, wheat free soy sauce, garlic and nutritional yeast. Nutritional yeast is a great item for vegans as it’s not animal derived yet gives a taste that’s often described as cheesy, nutty, savory, and “umami.”

This is our version of the Glory Bowl, and it’s mighty tasty.

Market Sourced Ingredients

1 bowl of Glory Bowl dressing and 1 package of Vegan Tofu from Hearts Choices

1 bag of Sesame Ginger rice from The Spicy Assistant

1-2 red beets, 4 medium-sized carrots, spinach, an orange, and 1 bunch of scallions (green onions) from Cherry Pit

1 bag of Sliced Almonds from Going Nuts

Start by making the rice as instructed in the packaging (this is as easy as pouring water into a pot and stirring the rice). Easy peasy lemon squeezy.

Glory Bowl Ingredients

While the rice is cooking, grate the beets and carrots separately either in a food processor (as shown) or on a tried and true box grater.  Add the juice of half an orange to the carrots and a dash of salt.  Leave the beets as is.

Grating Collage

To toast the almonds, place them in pan on medium heat (with no oil) and toss until they start to get some color. Be careful, burned almonds aren’t so great. Set aside when golden.

Almond Collage

To grill the tofu, simply heat a pan to medium with a little olive oil. Place tofu in hot pan and turn when golden (about 2-3 minutes on each side).


The bowl itself is best when layered, so start off with a portion of rice or quinoa from The Spicy Assistant and pour on a bit of the dressing. Next, add grated beets and carrots, slivered toasted almonds, spinach, and grilled tofu. Now, add a little more dressing on the top and voilà! a glory bowl. Yes! It’s that easy!

This dish can be varied greatly, adding whichever greens you would like (arugula, micro greens, crunchy bean sprout mix, etc). We added a healthy sprinkling of green onions.

Finished Glory Bowl

So, to all of the meat-lovers out there, we challenge you: come see Nan and Chris, try their truly surprising vegan fare.  Then, whip up this Glory Bowl… and just try to not go for seconds.

One-Pan Roast Chicken

We can hardly believe it’s been two years since we opened the doors to our new location on Blackfoot Trail!  To celebrate a truly fantastic two years, we partnered with The Silk Road Spice Merchant to create a limited edition custom spice blend that can be used on wide array of meat, poultry, and vegetables you can find here at the market.  It’s also great in soups, stews, and pastas.  Call it all-purpose, we call it fantastic.  Inspired by Scarborough Fair, it’s made up of parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme.  As well as, sea salt, pepper, lemon peel, garlic, marash chilis, freshly ground coriander, and citric acid.

On Saturday, April 20th and Sunday, April 21st we will be holding a contest for 200 customers to win a jar of our limited edition spice blend.  And!  One lucky guest will be awarded $100 in Calgary Farmers’ Market Bucks!  For all entry details, check out our website or our Facebook page.

And in case you were wondering just how fabulous the spice is, we have an easy Roast Chicken recipe that is sure to impress.

Chicken Ingredients

Market-Sourced Ingredients

1 Whole Chicken, either Free-Run from Spragg’s Meat Shop or an Organic Sunworks bird from Blush Lane Organics  *This bird is about 4lbs

2 Onions, 2 Bulbs of Garlic, 3-4 Celery Stalks, 1 lemon and 1 orange, 1 Bunch of Rainbow Carrots, and 1 Bulb of Fennel from Blush Lane Organics

1-2 Bags of Fingerling Potatoes from Greens, Eggs, and Ham

1 Litre of Chicken Stock from The Stock & Sauce Co.

Calgary Farmers’ Market Limited Edition Anniversary Blend from The Silk Road Spice Merchant

Chicken Collage 1

To prepare your chicken and vegetables

Take the chicken out of the fridge 30 minutes before it goes into the oven. Preheat your oven to 475°F.  There’s no need to peel the vegetables, but you can if you’re a stickler – just give them a wash and roughly chop them. Leave the potatoes whole.  Break the garlic bulb into cloves, leaving them unpeeled.  Leaving them in the skins will give you sweet, savory little pockets of roasted garlic yum that can be squished out into potatoes if you’re mashing them, onto the chicken, or even tossed in with the roasted veggies.

Toss all the vegetables, potatoes, and garlic in a little olive oil, salt & pepper, and a sprinkling of the Calgary Farmers’ Market Anniversary spice, and the juice of half an orange.  Pile everything into the middle of a large roasting tray (preferably with a bottom rack).

Pour 1 – 2 cups of chicken stock into the pan; the entire bottom of the pan should be covered with liquid.

*If you prefer baked potatoes and are looking for a neat way to bring something new to the table, try the accordion potato!  *We pop them in the microwave for 12 minutes before slicing and finishing them in the oven so the inside stays moist and fluffy while the outside crisps up.  (Be sure to pierce potatoes, toss them in olive oil and salt & pepper, place in a glass bowl, and cover with a damp cloth before microwaving).

Drizzle the chicken with olive oil or rub all over with softened butter.  Season well with salt, pepper, and the Calgary Farmers’ Market Anniversary spice.  Carefully prick the lemon all over using the tip of a sharp knife.  Put the lemon inside the chicken’s cavity with half of an onion and half a dozen of the prepped garlic cloves.

To truss your chicken

Don’t be afraid of this simple task, it’s as easy as tying your shoes.  And it will ensure even cooking which means you’ll have a killer chicken to present to your friends and family.  Here’s a straight-forward video on how to truss a chicken.

To cook your chicken
Place the chicken on top of the vegetables in the roasting tray and put it into the preheated oven.  Turn the heat down immediately to 400°F and cook the chicken for about 1 hour and 30 minutes; the juices should run clear when pierced and the legs move easily.  If you’re a little on the nervous side and you prefer to use a meat thermometer, the temperature should read 165° before resting.

After 30 minutes, baste the chicken and veggies; baste every 15 minutes thereafter.  Add more stock as the pan runs dry.  When cooked, take the pan out of the oven and transfer the chicken to a board, cover it with a layer of tinfoil and set it aside to rest while you’re taking care of the rest of the veggies and whipping together your gravy (about 15 minutes).

Chicken Collage 4

To carve your chicken

Carving a chicken really doesn’t need to be scary, it’s actually quite easy.  Here’s a great video if you need some tips.  Make sure to remove any string from the chicken before you start.

Chicken Collage 2

Veggies and Potatoes

Squeeze the deliciously sweet roasted garlic into the bowl with the roasted potatoes.  Add a dollop of butter, a splash of milk, and salt & pepper; smash away.  Pop it back in the oven (which is now off) to keep warm.  Arrange roasted veggies on a serving platter and place in the oven with the smashed potatoes.

Now, let’s make the gravy.

Chicken Collage 3

To make gravy

Some people can’t live without gravy, especially if you choose to pluck the fingerling potatoes and garlic out of the pan to make roasted garlic smashed potatoes – you can make a quick gravy by using the remaining stock.  Remove any chunks from the pan and pour all remaining stock (from the roasting pan and whatever you didn’t use up from The Stock & Sauce Co.) into a pot.  Place the pot directly onto the stove on a medium heat.  Adding flour to the stock is essentially what makes a gravy, you can do this two ways:  1. Stir a couple of tablespoons of flour with a little chicken stock until thickened, and slowly whisk into the pot on the stove.  Or, 2. Sprinkle the flour directly into the stock and whisk vigorously to prevent clumps.  The choice is yours.

Now, here’s the trick to making an outstanding gravy: taste it.  Yup, you heard it, taste taste taste.  It seems odd to say, but most people forget to taste their food as they go.  So, add more salt, pepper, or spices if you feel the gravy needs it.

And, if you feel like this just isn’t your cup of tea, The Stock & Sauce Co. makes a mean ready-to-go gravy.

Place carved chicken on a serving platter and surround with roasted veggies.  Sit at table surrounded with friends and family.  Dig in, and enjoy!

Chicken Dinner

Thank-you for helping us celebrate and supporting our new location. It has been an amazing year and we are looking forward to many more. We’re also looking forward to next year when we will be celebrating our 10th Anniversary as the Calgary Farmers’ Market! We can’t wait to celebrate our first decade with you in the summer of 2014.

Follow the Fragrant Silk Road

Five years ago, a writer and a nurse started experimenting, researching, sourcing, smelling, testing, and tasting.  Colin Leach and Kelci Hind decided it was time Calgary had a local specialty go-to spice shop that would serve as a place to inspire, excite, and invigorate the senses.  It only takes one step into the little shop in Inglewood to be transported, whisked away into the possibilities of plate and palate. Spice Collage 5 A list of 25 carefully selected blends sold online first, then a small location at the Calgary Farmers’ Market in the Currie Barracks, and now a shop at the new Calgary Farmers’ Market location and a bustling shop in trendy Inglewood; Colin and Kelci aren’t just specialists, they’re artisans.  The Silk Road Spice Merchant carries over 200 individual spices and 85 blends.  86 if you count the custom blend they made for the Calgary Farmers’ Market upcoming anniversary!

Spice Collage 1
Inspired by Scarborough Fair: parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme are the beginnings of the Calgary Farmers’ Market custom blend.
Spice Collage 3
All blends are handmade and bottled in the Inglewood shop. Even our own Amanda Bonner, Director of Marketing, got her spice on.

Finished Spice

The signature spice for the upcoming anniversary of the new Calgary Farmers’ Market location includes: parsley, sage, rosemary, thyme, sea salt, freshly ground pepper, garlic, lemon peel, freshly ground coriander, marash chilis, and citric acid It’s perfect for pretty much anything you’ll find at the market! Everyone, from pros to amateurs, can find the rare, basic, or unique spices they need to create an outstanding dish.  And their handmade blends are always fresh, aromatic, and flying off the beautiful antique shelves.  Requested from Nunavut to Australia, The Silk Road Spice Merchant hasn’t just made a name for themselves in Calgary, they’re taking the world by billowing, aromatic clouds of freshly ground spice-storm.

Freshly Ground Coriander

Want to get your hands on a jar of this limited edition custom anniversary blend?   To celebrate, we will be launching a contest for our customers to win a jar! All we ask is that you share an anniversary card, drawing, or letter describing what you love about the market. We will have 200 jars to giveaway to all the lucky customers over the anniversary weekend: April 20th and 21st. All submissions will be posted at Customer Service.  Of the 200 entries, we will select  our favorite and they will receive $100 in Calgary Farmers’ Market bucks. *Please submit off all cards and entry forms at Customer Service.

For more details, click here.

Kale and White Bean Stew

If you’re like most Calgarians, you rejoiced as the sun came out and the thermometer broke double digits. You pulled out your summer gear, came up with a get-bikini-ready routine, you may have even started dreaming of what you’ll plant in your garden.  We’ve all made that mistake.  It really is a foolish one; we ought to know better.  Can we complain that it’s the beginning of April and there’s a fresh layer of snow on the ground?  We could, but there isn’t much use.

Spring will come when it darn well pleases.  But that doesn’t mean we have to be miserable about it.  There are still great things to be whipped up in the kitchen; things that actually do best in cooler climates.  Like kale!  And stew is one heckuva way to keep toasty; it can take as little or as long as you like.  This is the traditional, let the stew simmer method, but we’ll give you the quick tips too.

Kale 1

Market-Sourced Ingredients

1 package Spanish Chorizo from Spragg’s Meat Shop

1-2 bunches fresh Organic Black Kale, 1 large sweet onion, 6 cloves garlic from Souto Farms

1 bag of tomatoes from Gull Valley Greenhouses

1 jar Stamp’s Great Northern Beans from Innisfail Growers

Olive Oil from La Cucina

Salt & Pepper

Turbinado Sugar

*You can substitute brown sugar, but turbinado sugar is generally less refined and can be purchased from your neighbourhood grocery store. Try to find a raw sugar that suits your taste buds.

Kale 3

First thing’s first, you need to soak the beans in water for 24 hours.

Then, cut the tomatoes into halves, toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper.  Grill them either in a pan, or when the blessed sun decides to show itself, enjoy grilling them on the BBQ.  Grilling the tomatoes will do a couple of things: enhance the sweetness of the tomato and add a slightly charred flavour.  Plus, removing the skins will be much easier, if that’s what you choose to do.

Kale Collage 2

Then, with a little olive oil in a dutch oven (or good ol’ pot), sauté the onions and garlic until slightly golden.  Add the Spanish Chorizo and break into smaller pieces.

Stir in the tomatoes and one cup of water.  *You can use stock of any kind, though chicken or veggie stock is best.  You can even use a good glug of wine at this point if your heart desires.

Add salt and pepper to taste, and 1 tablespoon of sugar.  If you want to kick up the heat, add 1 tablespoon of Ancho chili powder from The Silk Road Spice Merchant.

Kale FB Collage 2

Add the beans and another 2 cups of water.  Bring to a boil, cover and let stew until beans are soft.  Approximately one hour; add water or stock as needed.  *This is where you can decide if you want a slow stew or a fast.  If you want to soften the beans before adding them to the stew, boil them in water until soft.  If you’re in a pinch for time, use canned cannelini beans in place of the dried beans.

When the beans have sucked up most of the stock and have become nearly soft, add the kale that you’ve cut into half inch wide ribbons and simmer for another fifteen minutes, or until tender.  Tip: try to cut the kale into even strips so that each bite will include tender greens instead of a mishmash of soft and chewy kale.  And it looks pretty.

If you like your stew a little on the thicker side, mash some of the beans with a fork.  Otherwise, serve with a toasted slice of artisan bread.  Don’t forget the butter.  Never forget the butter.

Kale 5

Cook Like a Top Chef

Ever wondered if you had what it takes to cook like a Top Chef?  Well, we’re here to help.  Top Chef Canada Contestant Nicole Gomes will be demonstrating how to make a Truffled Mushroom Risotto at the market!  Join us this Saturday, April 6th at 12 noon to learn how to make it yourself and enjoy a sample of her delicious dish.  Find the recipe below with all sorts of delicious ingredients that can be found at the market.

Truffled Mushroom Risotto

Serves 4 – 6

For the mushrooms:

4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil from Fresh DELIcious

4 cloves garlic, 3 of them chopped from Souto Farms

Pinch dried chili flakes from The Silk Road Spice Merchant

1 pound assorted mushrooms (shitake, portobello, chantrelles, etc), cleaned and sliced from Souto Farms &   Cherry Pit


For the risotto:

2 tbsp butter, unsalted from Sylvan Star Cheese

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil from Fresh DELIcious

1 ½ cups carnaroli or arborio rice La Cucina

1 small onion, finely diced from Souto Farms

¼ cup dry white wine

8 cups chicken stock, heated until hot and on low heat from The Stock and Sauce Co

¾ cup parmesan, freshly grated from Fresh DELIcious

2 tbsp porcini powder (dried porcinis, ground to a dust in a coffee grinder) from Cherry Pit

3 tbsp  butter from Sylvan Star Cheese

1 tbsp truffle paste or ½ teaspoon of good quality white truffle oil from Fresh DELIcious

¼ cup chopped Italian flat leaf parsley or chives from Cherry Pit


Chef Nicole Risotto

To prepare mushrooms:

Heat a large fry pan on high heat, add olive oil being careful not to allow oil to smoke.  Add mushrooms, sauté for 2- 4 minutes or until lightly golden brown.  Turn down heat to medium high.  Add chilli flakes and garlic, sauté for about 2 minutes, until fragrant. Lightly season with salt and taste for seasoning.  Set aside.

To make risotto:

In a 10 – 12” sauté pan, heat olive oil and butter over medium heat.  Once butter is melted add onions and cook until softened and translucent but not browned, 8 – 10 minutes.  Add the rice and stir until opaque, you should notice the rice grains are translucent on the outside with a speck of white on the inside, 3 – 4 minutes.  Lightly season with salt, just a sprinkle.

Add the wine and stir until evaporated.  One cup at a time add stock and cook, stirring until all the liquid is absorbed.  Repeat this process one cup at a time, until rice is still slightly hard about 14 minutes (you may have stock left over).  Add mushrooms and porcini powder, stir in1cup of stock at a time until the rice is “al dente” (not mushy, not undercooked, but still has bite), about 5 minutes. Stir in parmesan and butter.   Adjust seasoning with salt and finish with truffle oil or truffle paste to taste. Finish with a Rice should be creamy and slightly moister than the consistency of porridge.  Drizzle over sauce, serve immediately.

Truffled Mushroom Risotto

If that doesn’t fix your Top Chef craving then join Nicole and all her supporters for a VIP viewing of Episode 4 of Top Chef Canada in support of the Canadian Cancer Society. Food and drink will be provided.

Monday, April 8th 2013
6pm-8:30 pm
Tickets are $25
Willow Park Wine and Spirits
To buy tickets call 403.296.1640 ext 277
Or buy online with

Follow Chef Nicole on Twitter

Easter Leftovers

After a busy weekend of hunting for Easter treats, entertaining family and friends, and preparing a big meal, the last thing you likely want to do is more.  More of anything.  But dinner awaits and standing in front of the fridge, gazing at all of the leftovers, hoping they will miraculously whip themselves together into something that passes as a meal isn’t going to help.  Do not despair.  Here, we have for you, two simple ways to use up that Easter ham staring back at you.

Market-Sourced Ingredients:

Leftover Ham from Spragg’s Meat Shop

Smoked Gouda from Sylvan Star Cheese

Edgar Farms Mustard Pickles from Innisfail Growers Co-op

Butter Lettuce from The Cucumber Man

Fig and Fennel Bread from Yum Bakery

Ham Sandwich 1

The best part about this sandwich is that it takes about five minutes to throw together, but tastes like you put a whole lot of thought and effort into it.  Start by cutting the ham into bite-sized pieces to be warmed in a pot.  This is where the sticky leftover bits of glazed ham and fatty rind really come in handy, coupled with a small splash of water, the ham will stay moist as it reheats.

Ham Sandwich 2

Lightly toast and butter the bread.  Top with the smoked gouda, mustard pickles (they’re really quite flavourful, so this is a to-taste preference), a leaf of the butter lettuce, and warmed ham.

Ham Sandwich 3

As you may suspect, this sandwich is a little on the messy side.  You could call it ‘rustic’ if you wanted to cover your bottom, but it would only be fair to warn you that it fast becomes a deconstructed sandwich.  It definitely falls into the category of being a ‘knife-and-fork-required’ kind of meal, but is that a bad thing?  You’ll be glad to have the fork to stab every delicious morsel left on your plate.  You may even lick it clean.  Just sayin’.

And if sandwiches aren’t your thing, or you’ve already had a few this week, you can use the remaining ham (and the bone) as the beginning to a number of great soups.  Making a stock is remarkably simple, and if you have a crock pot (as most Canadians do) they are beyond low maintenance.

Market-Sourced Ingredients:

Leftover Bone-In Ham from Spragg’s Meat Shop

1 bunch of Celery, a few Carrots, 1 bulb of Fennel, 1 sweet onion, 6 cloves of Garlic from Cherry Pit

3-4 Bay Leaves, Thyme, and Ancho Chile Powder from The Silk Road Spice Merchant

Salt & Pepper

Turbinado Sugar (brown or raw sugar can be substituted)

Ham Stock 1

It’s as easy as roughly chopping all of the veggies and throwing everything into a crock pot (a pot is absolutely acceptable, but a crock pot allows you to walk away and really have no worry of it boiling over and becoming a hot mess).  Add the bay leaves, and 1 teaspoon of all spices and sugar.  Cover with water, bring to a boil, and let simmer for 4 hours on high, and then 6-8 hours on low.  Yes, it takes a long time, but the ham bone needs a little more love than say, turkey leftovers.  As it steeps, the stock will become richer in flavour and gain more depth.

Ham Stock 2

Taste-as-you-go is always a good rule of thumb.  When you’ve reached a spoonful that makes you say “oooh! that’s good!”,  it’s a good sign it’s done.  Let the stock cool and then strain it away from all of the veggie bits and ham bone which will be discarded.  This stock can now be used as a base for the ever-popular split pea and ham soup (like this one by our friend Julie Van Rosendaal), a veggie soup, or even when sautéing vegetables.  And it freezes well for months in a well-sealed container.

Now, how many meals did you get out of your Easter ham this year?  With such beautiful ingredients found at the market, why let it go to waste?